How We Work
We are a registered charity which helps families in need to raise funds for treatments, therapies and equipment that aren’t freely available to them through their traditional or local healthcare support system.
We operate in a similar way to a crowdfunding platform, but as a registered charity we are better equipped to take any financial support from friends, family and the local community – and benefit from associated Gift Aid, too.
What makes us unique is when we take a family under our wing (or rather our big red cape), we support them in every aspect of their fundraising campaign. This will include empowering one or more of the family members to take on a physical challenge – something we have discovered is a powerful mechanism for fundraising, and offers a huge benefit to the family as a whole.
We truly believe in the power of inspiration (as opposed to guilt) to encourage donations, which is why our campaigns often work where other attempts may have failed. Positivity breeds positivity, and although you and your family are likely facing the greatest challenge of your lives, we believe that focusing on the good, will bring out the good (and the donations) in others.
How We Can Help
We will use our superpowers to:
- Work with you to develop and refine your personal story, so that it has the greatest possible impact
- Help you with the logistics of setting up a Superhero Foundation fundraising page
- Offer advice on all aspects of fundraising strategy, including brainstorming challenge ideas over tea and cake
- Share our social media pearls of wisdom – love it or hate it, social media is king when it comes to sharing your story as widely as possible
- Work with you to design and complete a physical challenge that will inspire both you and those who donate
- Offer PR support in developing a press release (or as much PR support is necessary), and securing media coverage
Some Real-life Examples
Theory is all very well and good, but sometimes it’s nice to see evidence of the words in action. So far we’ve worked with families with children suffering with cerebral palsy, to amputees and to those with severe scoliosis. Here’s a couple of case study type examples of how we work:
Charlotte approached us because her son Archie suffers from cerebral palsy and was in need of a selective dorsal rhizotomy (SDR) operation – something which then UK’s NHS wasn’t able to offer at the time. We supported Charlotte in her effort to raise £85,000, so that her and Archie could travel to America and have his operation.
Arm-amputee Alex called Superhero Foundation HQ because he was in need of post-operative therapy. Although the UK’s NHS was able to fund a ground breaking operation to install a new bionic arm, they were unable to cover the cost of the physiotherapy and aftercare – something which was vital to ensuring Alex was able to use his new arm to its full ability. We are currently supporting Alex and his family in their mission to raise £6,000 for a years worth of physiotherapy.
You can read more real life examples here.
What We Look For In Our Superheroes
We are a group of positive, driven and optimistic individuals whose sole mission in life is to help those in need, and enrich the lives of the families we work with.
Life in itself is a journey, and we believe that the journey to reaching your fundraising goal needn’t be an arduous unfulfilling slog. Yes it will be hard work, but we’ll have fun together along the way.
We are not everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s okay – because there are plenty of other options out there to help you fundraise. The service we offer is unique and personal, and so working with likeminded families is the key to success. You know your cause (and your family better than we ever will) and so we are here to support you, but not to take complete control.
We welcome and review all applications, but we are more likely to take on board families who have:
- A positive outlook on life (even in the most trying of times)
- A sense of humour
- A can-do attitude and irrepressible drive to succeed
- A desire to do good, and inspire other families in similar need
- An open mind and a willingness to at least consider our slightly off the wall ideas
- The mental desire to take on a physical challenge (physical ability is no match for mental strength)
We are not here to do everything for you, we know that wouldn’t work anyway. What we can promise is that we will work our butts off for you to get you started, and so you must be prepared to work your butt off too.
Fees vary according to the size of your fundraising target. We will invest the same amount of charity resource in your case, regardless of total target and so the % fees below are a reflection of this. In each case we take the bare minimum possible, just enough to cover the running costs of the charity, so that we can help more families in need.
[Ask us for more information about our fees]
On top of this, 5% of total donations will go to the money giving platform we use to collect funds, which in our case is Virgin Money Giving.
Unlike crowdfunding platforms, and as a UK registered charity, those who donate to Superhero Foundation campaigns will be able to add 25% Gift Aid. The additional funds you are able to claim back through Gift Aid will more than cover the applied fees.
Why Use Superhero Foundation
- Using a registered charity (as opposed to a crowdfunding platform) means more businesses, trusts and organisations will donate as they are often only able to give to registered charities.
- The advice we offer is based on experience from many previous challenges and fundraising campaigns.
- We have experts in fundraising, physical health, finance, marketing and PR available to work with you.
- Superhero Foundation is a family within itself. Superheroes who have undertaken challenges, raised funds and completed their own treatments are on hand to help you through the process.
- Most donations made will be eligible for Gift Aid, adding 25% to their value (only possible through charitable status), which other crowdfunding sites can’t do.
What We Can Fund
We can pay for any treatment or therapy that is not available under the NHS or equivalent healthcare service in countries other than the UK.
This list details the treatment areas we can cover, and which are in line with our charitable objectives. It is by no means an exhaustive list, but will give you a good idea for starters:
- Medical assessments for diagnosis
- Surgery anywhere in the world to improve quality of life
- Physiotherapy, speech therapy or hearing therapy. Other therapy will be considered, providing it fits with the supplied treatment plan
- Travel costs related to your treatment plan.
- Subsistence costs, currently up to £50 per night on production of receipts.
- Equipment required to aid treatment and recovery (providing this equipment cannot be accessed locally & conveniently.)
An important note: We operate on honesty and clarity here at Superhero Foundation HQ, so please understand that although we have many superpowers, as a charity, we are bound by rules set by the Charity Commission. That means that any treatments we fund must be approved by Trustees in line with our charitable objectives.
What Our Superheroes Say
Don’t take our word for it, here are what those who have worked with us say about their Superhero Foundation experience:
“Although our journey seemed impossible, it was the Foundation’s belief in us and the support from them that we hit our target and raised more than £85,000 for our boy, Archie, giving him the chance to walk for the rest of his life” – Charlotte Thornhill (Archie’s Chance To Dance)
“As a family and the money we needed to raise, I felt that we were in a dark hole and I felt depressed. They helped my husband, James, literally climb ‘Everest’ which brought in enough funds to send our daughter to the US for a life-changing op which has improved her life forever. We really feel a part of a proper superhero family with this charity and it has brought us so much happiness” – Kate Bottger (Charlotte’s Dream To Walk)
How To Apply
If you’ve read through all of the above and think we could be the right fit for you and your family, fantastic! You can get in touch by phone on 01452 698765 or email email@example.com
We will have an initial chat to gauge whether it sounds like we can help you on your fundraising mission, and all being well, we’ll then send you a short application form for you to fill out.
Your case will then be presented to the board of Trustees at the next Foundation meeting, and once approved, the fundraising can begin!
If you still have further questions – take a look at our FAQs section below, or drop us an email and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can.
How long will it take for my application to be approved?
Anything from two weeks up to one month. The board of trustees meet once a month, and so depending on when you apply – your case will be reviewed at the next available meeting. Conversely if we don’t think we’re quite the right organisation to help you, we will let you know right away.
Why don’t you approve all applications?
We are a small charity with limited resources. This means that we only have the capacity to take on a few families at a time, but conversely it means that the families we do take on get our full attention.
What do you need from superhero families in advance of approving an application?
- If you come on board as a superhero family, we will need you to supply a detailed treatment plan. This should include the below:
- Record of a medical assessment from a specialist, fully qualified within their field of expertise.
- The medical specialist’s recommendation of the treatment or therapy you wish to fund.
- A breakdown of all associated treatment and therapy costs, and any aftercare required.
- Details of where and when the treatment or therapy would take place together with associated travelling / subsistence costs you wish to be covered.
- We will send you an application form to fill out with everything we need from you
Paying for treatment…
Do you pay for the agreed treatment directly, or will you reimburse?
Once the agreed treatment begins we work together to get everything paid for directly, and any expenses you are due reimbursed.
How do families keep track of how their raised funds are being spent?
With all donations directed into Superhero Foundation, every month we’ll send you an update which includes how much you have left to spend on your medical treatment(s) from all your fundraising efforts.
Can you pay for any treatments of therapies in advance of receiving funds?
The amount we pay out must already have been credited to Superhero Foundation bank account by your fundraising. We can only pay for any treatments or therapies in advance of receiving funds.